Is this a bagworm moth larva poking its head out of its silk bag camouflaged with bits of dried leaves, bark and other debris? I have never seen one of these until now. I was looking at my mandevilla vine when I saw a strange object moving along its stem looking like a bunch of debri moving by itself. Then I saw a tiny dark head and a bit of the top section of a catepillar emerge from the debri. It sent out a very thin thread and made contact with a leaf. I couldn't tell if its was actually munching on the leaves as it moved around. I read that they usually do not emerge until June so I am a bit confused. Any assistance with confirming its ID will be appreciated.
Thanks so much. I made a big mistake because I didin't know what it was, I took it from my mandevilla vine and then deposited it in a field across from my house. I guess I should have not been so kind and waited until I had an ID. I sure hope it doesn't come back. :o)
Badseed, ar you sure they are catepillars in the net and not tent some sort of worms? There is a variety of pest down here that lives in the pecan and black cherry trees. They look a lot like catepillars, but if they drop on you, they sting and make a really nasty spot that gets infected really easy. My grandmother used to kill them by setting a corn broom on fire and sticking it up in the tree...till one dropped on her shoulder. She ended up having to go see a doctor with the sting. After that Granddaddy took all the pecan trees out and put in a vegetable garden where the pecan orchard had been.
trois, I had better check the cedar tree behind my back fence and my arborvitae for bagworms. I don't want them to "disappear". I also should have noted the kind of leaves were used to camouflage the sac because this might tell me which plants it was eating besides being on the mandevillea vine so I could look for more.
ViburnumValley, I should buy a Bt product just in case I need it.
Badseed, 5% sevin dust is listed on some sites as an effective bagworm killer.You have a chance to control bagworms if you apply it when the insect and bags are about 1/2 inch or smaller in length. A large infestation of them can kill a tree. I chuckled when it was suggested that they be handpicked from the plant. This is not feasible in most cases.
BamaBelle, I think I have been "stung" by the catepillar to which you refer. Does the pain last for a long time and the area affected looks like a cigarette burn but is shaped like the part of the catepillar that came in contact with the skin?
Yep, you should check the Cedars. Bagworms are frequently confused with webworms which can be controlled with dilute detergent.
I believe the critter you are describing that stings is a Mexican Asp. We have all had a bad experience with these when they drop down your collar. They are usually white and instead of having a long round body like a regular catepillar their body is long and triangular shapped, not round. They are very painful. My son went to Dr. for his sting, Dw and I just wait it out, use a bit of ambisol. Since we have lived here in Santa Fe, we haven't seen a Mexican Asp.
I have seen the Mexican asp, but not ay lately. Fortunately, I have never been stung by one. The one to which I was referring above is a catepillar, is a tannish color and has short bristles along its body. The bristles have the liquid that causes the stinging sensation. As I recall, it had some green on it too.I'll take a photo of one if I see any. One day I placed a T'-shirt out to dry under one of my oak trees. It was inside out I brought it in when it was dry, turned it rightside out and put it on. I quickly found out that several of these catepillars were now inside the T-shirt aftr the burning began. I sustained lots of injured areas as I took the T-shirt off. I called the poison control center because I had so many burned areas and the gentleman said to immediately wash the areas off with dish soap, rinse with water and then wipe the areas with alchohol because the substance is oil based.